René Colato Laínez

Books by This Author

From North to South

Illustrated by: Joe Cepeda

When Mamá is sent to a detention center in Tijuana because she doesn't have the right immigration papers, José must get used to life without her. He and his father visit Mamá at the center, where they talk about the future in which they will be together. Based on the experiences of René Colato Laínez's students, both he and illustrator Joe Cepeda strike the right balance of honesty and hope in depicting this difficult yet common situation for families along the border.

My Shoes and I

Age Level: 9-12

Mario is leaving El Salvador with a new pair of shoes — and a good thing, too, because he has a long and difficult journey ahead of him to reach a new country. His shoes carry him through rain and across mountains, all the way to the river where his mother is waiting on the other side. Young readers may need some information explaining the context of the story, which is based on the author's journey from El Salvador in 1985. Painted illustrations on grainy wood backgrounds match the gritty but hopeful tone of the story.

Playing Lotería

Illustrated by: Jill Arena
Age Level: 6-9

Product Description: Together a little boy and his grandma discover a world of language through la lotería, a Mexican game similar to Bingo, and realize that loved ones have special ways of understanding each other.

René Has Two Last Names

Illustrated by: Fabiola Graullera Ramirez
Age Level: 6-9

"René, a new student from El Salvador, doesn't understand why his second last name is missing from his desk's name label. Adding it results in a name so long that his classmates make fun of it by comparing it to that of a dinosaur…When his teacher assigns the students the project of creating a family tree, René is determined to show his classmates and teacher why he has two last names and the importance of his dos apellidos." — School Library Journal

The Tooth Fairy Meets El Ratón Pérez

Illustrated by: Tom Lintern
Age Level: 3-6

Product Description: When both the Tooth Fairy and El Ratón Pérez arrive to claim Miguelito's tooth, sparks fly under the Mexican-American boy's pillow. Who will rightfully claim his tooth? This magical tale introduces a legendary Latino character to a new audience and provides a fresh take on the familiar childhood experience of losing one's tooth.